The reason for congestion on the roads and transport system is the mass movement of people in the same early morning and evening hours.
This is due to the majority of establishments requiring their employees to work in the daylight hours.
Perhaps banks and mid to large corporations could be bold and break away from the traditional working hours and set up two shifts working from 7am to 3pm and from 3pm to 11pm.
There are numerous benefits to this.
- Congestion will be minimised as the road and rail systems are utilised more evenly through the day. Transport operators can also optimise their resources through the new business hours rather than deploy a large quantity of resources during the existing peak hours only.
- Businesses can enjoy significant savings in fixed cost and optimum utilisation of resources. They can also have a competitive edge among customers who span several time zones.
- Workers can have the opportunity to have work-life balance and manage the time they spend with family, attending courses, pursuing social and sports activities, or running errands. They will also have less stress when travelling.
- It can also appeal to the inactive workforce who may find the shift hours more suited to their time commitments.
The airport and seaport already operate round the clock. Many in the manufacturing, construction, marine, healthcare and service industries likewise operate two or three shifts a day.
Government agencies should take the lead to implement two shifts a day.
Having two shifts will certainly connect us firmly with the rest of the world across different time zones and make Singapore a more vibrant city to work and play.
Ivan Ho Seng Cheng